Thursday, June 13, 2024

Planted letter


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Apropos the front page article “NEIGRIHMS docs tarnishing image of State women: KSU” (ST Oct 27, 2011) the report is derogatory To NEIGRIHMS. It alleges that “two doctors” (Dr. D.K. Parida and Dr. P Bhattacharyya) had written a letter to Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on November 1, 2010 claiming that the women from the State are giving bribes to get a job in the institute. It is pertinent to note that inferences have been made from the “said letter” – whose contents are not known, which are very degrading to the members of the staff of the institute, especially women members of the staff.

I categorically deny that I have ever written such a letter to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare nor to any other such institution on this matter. I have the highest regard for the women folk of Meghalaya. In all my dealings with female staff I have always maintained the greatest decorum as can be testified by the staff working with me in areas like Operation theatre, ICU, Library, etc. In fact, coming from UP, I was very impressed to see the women of Meghalaya so well educated, holding responsible posts, aware of their rights, and in total control of their lives – rather an example to the rest of India. The only other comparable place in India is Kerala (where I had the privilege of working earlier).

I wish to reiterate that the report is totally false, mischievous and is aimed at tarnishing my image. As a senior serving officer with administrative experience as Dean, I am expected to know that I am not permitted to sign letters jointly, neither to write such letters directly to the Union Ministry, that too without mentioning any specific instance of wrongdoing and again without proof. Such an action automatically attracts disciplinary action.

I demitted the Office of Dean on 1st November 2010. This means that if I had ever written such a letter, then, am I supposed to criticize the Administration of NEIGRIHMS, during a period when I was still a member of the same establishment/ administration? Not a single communication has come to me from the establishment/Ministry questioning me on this matter over the past one year. It is important that the authenticity (or lack of it) of the letter be established first, since, the article makes sweeping inferences of a very derogatory nature which affect the reputations of the women members of the staff in particular.

I request that sincere investigations be made about who is responsible for the false/planted letters.

Yours etc.,

Dr Prithwis Bhattacharyya

Prof & Head, Department of Anaesthesiology, NEIGRIHMS.

 Real claims!

 Apropos the letter, “Tall Claims” (Oct 21, 2011)by Balsrang Sangma he has alleged that I have been introducing myself as a ‘Cardio Specialist’ to ignorant patients. Mr Sangma writes that, to call oneself a cardiologist, a doctor must possess a recognized degree of DM (or its equivalent in the subject). I wish to inform the writer that I am a clinical cardiologist for which it is not mandatory to have a DM degree. A post graduate diploma course in clinical cardiology is recognized by all universities in India as sufficient to entitle one to be called a clinical cardiologist. Further, this diploma course is not a short term course as alleged by Mr Sangma. It is a full two years course. For becoming an interventional cardiologist, of course, the degree of DM/DNB is necessary. This distinction between Interventional Cardiology and Non-invasive Cardiology is either not within the knowledge of Sangma or he has chosen to ignore this distinction just to malign me.

After I passed my MBBS, I joined the health department, Government of Meghalaya which deputed me to undergo 2 years PG diploma course in Clinical Cardiology provided by Indira Gandhi National Open University in Max Super Speciality Hospital New Delhi. I completed my studies at the said Hospital and qualified in the 1st Division with Distinction. IGNOU degrees/ diplomas/ are recognized by all member Universities of the Association of India and also by AICTE.

Thereafter, the Government of Meghalaya posted me at Tura against one post of specialist in medicine (Grade II ) because there is no sanctioned post for clinical cardiologist. The allegations of Mr Sangma (though he has not named me but he obviously refers to me as I am the only doctor having diploma in Clinical Cardiology at Tura Civil Hospital) are totally unfounded and amounts to vilification.

Yours etc.,

Civil Hospital, Tura.

 Cost overrun of Leshka project


It is official now that the state received 35% less rainfall than normal during this monsoon season. The Umiam lake could only reach the level of 3209 feet ( above sea level) out of its full capacity of 3220. It is a massive shortfall of 11 feet. This would be the fifth year in a row that the dam could not fill to capacity, and the fifth year that no excess water could be released. Not only that, October is not yet over, and the level has already fallen to below 3203 feet. What this portents is that in the coming months the MeCEL will have to resort to massive power cuts. On the other hand, the military station in Umroi continues to draw huge amounts of water daily from the dam, further worsening the problem. And yes, what has happened to the Leshka power project, which appears all set to become the costliest hydel power project per kilowat in the country? Has anyone been made accountable for the delay and the massive cost overrun? Natural calamities are a convenient cover-up for technical and human lapses.

Yours etc.,

R Wallang

Via email


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